Kieran Vernon continued his impressive return to the Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship with a pair of podium finishes in Rounds Six and Seven at Thruxton, Hillspeed's first trip to the category podium since 2010.
The weekend didn't start perfectly for Vernon, with some damage picked up qualifying restricting him to seventh and sixth place starts. In the opening race, he sliced his way into the top five on the opening lap, before gaining places on lap four and five to move into third for the flag.
In the second race, another rocket start saw him get into fourth, before slotting into third on lap two. After running there for the majority of the race, Vernon benefitting from a spin from the then race leader to take a second place finish.
The West Chilington racer's superb start to the 2012 season means that despite having no testing and missing the first three races of the year, Vernon already sits eighth in the championship standings, only nine points shy of the top six.
With Marcus Allen missing from action, Vernon was joined in the Hillspeed awning by just Danish team-mate Jacob Nortoft for the weekend. On his debut at the fearsome circuit, the 18 year old qualified just inside the top twenty for both races.
Dropping to twentieth early on in the first race, Nortoft fought back to finish fifteenth, which became fourteenth post-race after a penalty for a rival. The second race saw him climn up to fifteenth, the two results seeing him climb up to fourteenth in the championship standings.
Team Principal Richard Ollerenshaw said: “Kieran did an absolutely outstanding job this weekend. I didn't realise before we arrived at the track he hadn't actually been to Thruxton since he raced in Ginetta Junior several years ago. It's been a fantastic weekend for him, he raced superbly and he's shown precisely what he's capable of. It's great for everyone at Hillspeed to be back on the podium.
“Jacob's making great progress each time he's in the car and we're very pleased with the rate of development he's showing. Thruxton is a very difficult track at the best of times, for a rookie like Jacob to come in, have no incidents and take away a good haul of points is as much as we could have asked. It's been a very positive weekend for Hillspeed.”
Provisional 2012 Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship Driver Standings (after Rd7):
8th Kieran Vernon, 95pts; 14th Jacob Nortoft, 44pts; 20th Marcus Allen, 31pts